The NoFap Supplement Report, Part 1: NAC for craving reduction

Printer-friendly version

The NoFap Supplement Report, Part 1: NAC for craving reduction

 by tigerthink

Note: The reddit voting system tends to penalize longer, more in-depth posts like this one that take a while to read. I'd really like to help as many people as possible with this supplement stuff, so here's a little reminder to vote this post up if you think it's useful.

Hi /r/NoFap. I'm one of the younger "slow rebooters" you sometimes read about. Despite only masturbating about 5 times in the last 8 months or so, I'm still struggling with ED and social anxiety.

Several months ago, I got sick of my slow reboot and decided to try to find a shortcut. I started researching obsessively online, looking for anything that might accelerate the reboot process.

I don't have any magical cures, but I've identified at least 2 supplements that I think a typical NoFap user could benefit substantially from. Both are safe supplements you can buy on Amazon that seem to speed the recovery process.

WARNING: These supplements will NOT cure you completely. I learned this one hard way. I thought a supplement had fixed me and decided I might as well fap. I WAS WRONG, and set my reboot back months as a result. So, continue to stay fap free at all costs.

For this post, I'll cover n-acetylcysteine. N-acetylcysteine (NAC) been shown to:

Given the variety of actions observed, it seems reasonable to me to conclude that NAC is a generic anti-craving supplement. I wouldn't be surprised if it was also useful for, say, food cravings in obese people trying to lose weight, or cravings in video game enthusiasts who are trying to focus on their homework.

One paper continued to observe positive effects in cocaine-addicted rats even after discontinuation of NAC, writing:

The reduction in behavior despite the absence of the N-acetyl cysteine indicates that repeated N-acetyl cysteine may have altered drug-induced plasticity that underlies drug-seeking behavior.

In other words, it looks like NAC may permanently reverse some of the changes in the addicted brain. This observation was echoed in at least one other study.


In my experience, taking NAC makes staying fap free significantly easier, and the effects last long after you discontinue taking it (provided you continue to avoid fapping and don't re-addict yourself). If you're one of those fapstronauts who has a hard time lasting for longer than a week, I'd strongly recommend giving NAC a try. If you're currently 40+ days in to a reboot, NAC may still be good for reducing the "background temptation" to fap. Currently, it takes me very little willpower to stay fap free, and I attribute this largely to experimenting with NAC off and on in the past few months. The only times I get seriously tempted are when I'm really stressed out.

NAC has a weird effect on my libido... the first few days I take it, my libido tends to go up, but as I take it longer, it tends to go back down. Sometimes a week or two after I've come off of NAC my libido comes back up again. Sometimes this doesn't happen and it sends me in to a LONG flatline (which is actually good--I think I recover faster during flatlines). My advice: Ignore any effect NAC has on your libido. It's probably just temporary. At two different times, I thought NAC had fixed my libido problems, so I fapped, which turned out to be a BIG mistake. Whatever happens to your libido, stay fap free at all costs. If you really want to test yourself, find a girl to rewire with, or give yourself a gentle penis massage for under a minute each day instead.

Dosage and Side Effects

This LEF article writes:

40 years of use in a variety of clinical conditions [have] established the safety of [NAC], even at very high doses and for long-term treatments. One study demonstrated the safety of 1,800 mg per day for 142 days, while another study demonstrated the safety of 2,800 mg per day for 3 months.

The dosage used in addiction studies is typically much lower than that.

  • If you have a hard time staying fap free for longer than a week, I'd recommend starting with 1200 mg per day your first week, then 1800 mg per day your second week, then 2400 mg per day your third week, spreading your dose throughout the day, stopping the increases as soon as you find a dose that's helpful for you, and not continuing longer than 4 weeks without taking a long break.
  • If you just want to decrease your "background temptation" to fap, 600 mg per day for 1-2 weeks ought to work great.

These recommendations are based on my own experiences and the dosages used in addiction studies, which I summarize in this comment.


You can buy N-acetylcysteine through online stores like Amazon. Your local grocery store might carry it in its vitamins and supplements section if its vitamins and supplements section is unusually comprehensive. Vitamin Shoppe is another good place to look.

Data Collection

In order to keep all the reports about NAC in one place, I'd love it if people could share any experiences they have in this thread. If you want to make a regular /r/NoFap submission about your NAC experience, that would be great--please try to remember to link to it from here so that we can use this thread as a comprehensive reference.

Supplement Neuroscience

If you're a neuroscience person interested in the mechanism behind how NAC helps with addiction, this review discusses the mechanism some, along with many of the papers that I linked to above. If you'd like to collaborate with me for research into other NoFap supplements, please send me a personal message!

Disclaimer: I'm not a doctor and this should be considered information, not advice. Take NAC at your own risk. Oh yeah, and vote this post up if you liked it, it took me several hours to put together...